Travels with Paddles

a sea kayaking journal

Axel Schoevers (Photo: A. de Krook) Name:
Axel Schoevers
Rijswijk, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands

Sunday, October 02, 2016

Stacking it again

A beautiful sunny day generally means I favor paddling out to the Skerries. Lucklily I did not do that today and went along for 'stacking it' again. For one, it's grey seal pupping season. Steve told me that the Skerries is full of them now; not to be disturbed. The other reason that today was the best South Stack race I ever paddled. Maybe even my best tide-race surfing ever.

With all the South Stack magic, I almost forgot that we had more than an hour great surfing at Penrhyn Mawr before heading on to North Stack. I had to do two precautionary capsises of which one I swam aferwards and had to do a re-entry. So exhausted I was that I could not hold my breath anymore after the first failed attempt to roll.

All of the beaches were taken by the seal pups. The only undisturbing lunch spot we could find was a rock ledge beyond North Stack in the shade. Out of the sun it was chilly.

After lunch, North Stack was very dissapointing for surfing. We continued directly to South Stack to find the most wonderful running race. Sunshine made it all less scary. Wave after wave. Sometimes broaching, bracing and sometimes just continueing the surf after broaching when pivoting on the foam pile and down again, go, go, go... Magic!

Steve and Ed just kept on going when I thought it would be enough. I imagine when the locals do not want to stop or had enough, it must be very special. There is no eddy at the race, so it is full-on all the time. The eddy is 10 minutes paddling to South Stack and 10 minutes back up again to drop into the race again. With Ed, Steve, Zoe, Tavi, Gerard & Lianne. Hope to be back again in November.

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